Students had the opportunity to make play dough in small groups working with a recipe that included fractions. Using the scientific method, they posed a question, made a prediction, and came up with a plan to sculpt the continents to simulate how the glaciers melted over time and flooded the land bridge. Students observed the process over time in 3 stages: beginning, middle, and end. They recorded their observations by drawing what they saw and recording the final results. They were all able to observe that over time, the glaciers would melt, and the land bridge would be flooded, forcing the ancestors of the modern Native Americans to move from the land bridge to North America.
Other theories have been proposed of course, but this theory is now commonly accepted based on evidence that continues to be found. Check out the time-lapse video that shows the experiment from a 5th grade group. Students will continue to discuss other theories that are being explored by scientists this week. Upon returning from break, we will be focusing on the climate and geography of regions in North America, as well as Native American Cultures and traditions.